Performance Review Law

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 What Is a Work Performance Review?

A work performance review, also known as a performance appraisal or evaluation, is a formal process that evaluates an employee’s job performance over a specific period. During the review, a supervisor might provide feedback to the employee regarding their strengths and weaknesses, accomplishments, and areas for improvement.

Companies can also use performance reviews to identify development opportunities and set goals for employees.

What Makes Up Work Performance Review?

A typical work performance review includes a meeting between an employee and their supervisor or manager, discussing the employee’s job performance in detail. During the meeting, the supervisor or manager may give feedback on the employee’s productivity, quality of work, job knowledge, communication skills, teamwork, punctuality, and attendance.

The performance review may also include reviewing the employee’s job description and any goals set during the previous review period. The employee and the supervisor may discuss progress made towards these goals and set new goals for the upcoming review period.

To prepare for a performance review, the employee might be asked to complete a self-evaluation, where they evaluate their own job performance and identify their strengths and areas they’d like to improve. This self-evaluation can be used as a starting point for the discussion during the performance review meeting.

Is a Performance Review the Same as a Grievance?

No, a performance review is not the same as a grievance.

A grievance is a formal complaint made by an employee to their employer about a perceived violation of their rights or unfair treatment. Employees can file grievances related to working conditions, pay, hours of work, job assignments, or any other workplace issue that the employee feels is unjust.

In contrast, a performance review is a formal evaluation of an employee’s job performance conducted by their supervisor or manager. A performance review doesn’t have to be related to any specific complaint or issue but rather focuses on the employee’s overall performance of their role.

While a performance review can identify areas where an employee needs to improve, it is not a complaint or a grievance. If an employee has a complaint or issue that they feel needs to be addressed through the performance review process, they may raise a formal grievance with their employer. The grievance process is governed by the organization’s policies and procedures and aims to resolve the complaint fairly and impartially.

Can I Sue If My Supervisor Gave Me a Good Review but Fired Me?

From a legal standpoint, being given a good work performance review does not guarantee continued employment, and employers can generally terminate employees for a variety of reasons within their rights, as long as they do not violate anti-discrimination laws or other legal protections in doing so.

However, if you were given a good work performance review but your employment was terminated based on a protected characteristic, such as race, gender, religion, age, or disability, an employee may have grounds to sue their employer for wrongful termination or discrimination.

What Is Performance Evaluation Discrimination?

Performance evaluation discrimination happens when an employee is unfairly evaluated or given a poor review based on a protected characteristic, such as race, gender, or age.

For example, an employer who systematically rates female employees lower than male employees for the same job or gives older workers lower ratings because of their age would be engaging in performance evaluation discrimination.

Performance evaluation discrimination can negatively impact career advancement and earning potential and create a hostile work environment. It is illegal under federal and state laws, and employees who experience this type of discrimination may be able to take legal action against their employer.

To prove discrimination, you must show that you were treated differently than other employees who were similarly situated but were not in the protected class.

In the case of a good performance review followed by termination, you would need to show that other employees with similar reviews were not terminated and that the termination was based on a protected characteristic.

Can My Former Employer Mention My Bad References During a Reference Check?

Employers have the right to disclose truthful and factual information about a former employee’s work performance when providing a reference check to a potential employer. However, this information must be accurate, and the employer can’t make subjective comments or provide misleading information.

If a former employer mentions negative references during a reference check, and the information is untrue or inaccurate, you may have legal standing for defamation or wrongful termination. You should keep detailed records of your employment, including performance evaluations and any disciplinary action taken, to refute any negative information that may be shared about you.

If you believe your former employer is providing misleading or inaccurate information during a reference check, you may want to consider getting legal advice to understand your rights and options for recourse. Also, start using a new list of references that can speak to your qualifications and job performance to potential employers instead of relying on your former employer to provide a reference.

Can I Sue My Employer for a Bad Review?

Employees generally cannot sue their employer for a bad review unless it is based on false statements or discriminatory reasons.

A “bad review” can refer to a performance review that is critical or negative of your job performance. While a negative review can be demotivating and impact your career growth, it is not necessarily illegal or grounds for a lawsuit.

However, if the bad review is based on discriminatory reasons, such as your race, gender, age, or disability, you may have grounds to sue for discrimination. Additionally, if the review contains false statements or defamatory remarks that harm your reputation, you may be able to sue for defamation.

Illegal issues in a work performance review can include unfair performance reviews, illegal performance evaluations, or false statements in a performance review.

Unfair performance reviews may involve discrimination or retaliation against an employee. Illegal performance evaluations may involve using criteria that are not job-related, such as personal relationships, or violating anti-discrimination laws.

False statements in a performance review can include untrue, misleading, or defamatory statements.

If you believe you have been subjected to unfair or discriminatory performance reviews or evaluations, you may want to consider speaking with an employment lawyer to understand your rights and options for recourse. Also, consider raising your concerns with your human resources department or filing a complaint with a government agency, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Should I Hire an Employment Lawyer?

If you believe you have been wrongfully terminated from your job, speak with an experienced employment lawyer who can help you understand your legal rights and options. A wrongful termination lawyer can review the details of your case, gather evidence to support your claims, and help you pursue legal action if appropriate.

You could be wrongfully terminated for a variety of reasons, including discrimination based on protected characteristics, retaliation for reporting illegal or unethical conduct, or for exercising your legal rights, such as taking medical leave or reporting workplace safety concerns. These actions are illegal under federal and state laws, and you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, emotional distress, and other damages.

If you believe you have been wrongfully terminated, reach out to a wrongful termination lawyer for guidance and support. They can help you throughout the legal process and fight for your rights.

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